Microsoft have introduced a quality scoring system for adCenter ads that is very similar to Google AdWords Quality Score. The new system launched on the 16th. They will be notifying affected advertisers, but it is recommended that all adCenter advertisers check their accounts to see how the new scoring has changed their ad positioning and visibility.
The new scoring system works as follows:
- User queries will be classified according to user intent (buy / browse), as per the previous adCenter labs research on user intent classification
- Keywords will be checked for relevance to the advertiser’s landing page, and content on the landing page will be checked to ensure there is enough to give the searcher what he/she needs
- Ads and landing pages will be checked for content duplication and ads from sites with duplicate content might be limited.
The last point will adversely effect all sites that have used adCenter to promote their affiliated content ever since AdWords made it tougher for affiliates to promote on Google.
While these moves are good for overall quality of the search experience, they will do little or nothing to increase the number of actual searches on MSN or Live Search.